Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Statement Regarding Richard Marshall’s Motion to Quash a Subpoena

Statement Regarding Richard Marshall’s Motion to Quash a Subpoena in the trial of John Graham: What is the truth? South Dakota justice system seeks lies as truth in Indian country.

November 30, 2010 - What becomes of a country when it’s indigenous people are being taught that, in a foreign court of law, lying under oath is a truthful lie and that truthful lie will set you free?

Back in the 1970s when Sovereignty was an idea of the red power movement, Indians were just beginning to examine corruption in their tribal governments. Today, Sovereignty means something different. Today we see that Sovereignty banner in every gaming compact negotiation where tribal leaders plead to states for more slot machines, while the racist state bargains for more jurisdiction in Indian Country, keeping in mind the states goal of gaining more Indian lands. In 1973, Richard Marshall was one of those early Sovereignty rights advocates as he traveled with leaders like Pedro Bissonette.

In April 2010 Richard Marshall, charged in federal court with aiding and abetting in the murder of Anna Mae Aquash, was found not guilty by an all white jury in South Dakota. Since then, the Oglala leader has had to contend with a fragmented legal strategy of federal prosecutors who maintain their position as the “truth” in the case of Aquash’s death.

What is the truth? South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley has a problem with the legal definition in the trial of John Graham (accused of the 1975 murder of Anna Mae Pictou Aquash); Richard Marshall is to testify "the truth" as a South Dakota prosecutorial witness or his 99 year parole sentence will be revoked.

In the words of the South Dakota Attorney General, "as long as he (Richard Marshall) tells the truth he won’t have a problem." However there is the South Dakota legal determination of the truth. And that is, "as long as you lie under oath and help convict an American Indian, that truthful lie will set you free."

Here is the problem; in 2003 Richard Marshall gave non-inculpatory testimony to a grand jury about his lack of involvement in Anna Mae Aquash's death. Marshall was found Not Guilty because he had no involvement in her death. Jackley now seeks to charge Richard Marshall with perjury and use it against him at his parole hearing, if he "lies" under oath.

Richard Marshall was accused of supplying the murder weapon to John Graham. On April 21, 2010 a Rapid City jury found Richard Marshall NOT guilty of aiding and abetting in the death of Anna Mae Aquash. In 2004 and 2005, in the Arlo Looking Cloud case, the United States Attorney made that affirmation to the US Court of Appeals, "Looking Cloud handed a revolver to John Graham" (U.S. v. Looking Cloud, 419 f3d 781, 8th cir.) In 2008, after making a deal with prosecutors, Looking Cloud changed his “truth” by claiming a different scenario to fit with the scheme of the prosecution.

The Lakota Student Alliance believes that the South Dakota justice system is entrapping Richard Marshall in a corner. And whatever testimony he presents he will be accused of being in violation of his parole. It is a premeditated European act that goes as far back as the Salem witch trials which declares that whether you are or are not, you are nevertheless guilty. Anybody’s accusations about you are the only grounds needed to find you guilty. And that is the way that the Lakota Student Alliance perceives the South Dakota justice system.

The days of cowboys and Indians are not over in South Dakota. Richard Marshall was found not guilty in a federal court of law. And he is not guilty of violating his parole. The problem is the South Dakota justice system leadership or lack thereof it. In order for South Dakota to obtain federal funding to their state prison department, they must find all native people guilty of any and all crimes, petty to felony. As long as South Dakota jails are filed with Native Americans, the prison population of that justice system will continue to top the list of conviction rates and there will be no hope for the unborn native generations to know what freedom is.

The Lakota Student Alliance compels the question of whether the South Dakota Attorney General Jackley is complicit with the premeditated entrapment of Richard Marshall; the LSA accuses SD Attorney Gen. Jackley with the premeditated entrapment of Richard Marshall; the falsifying of testimony if Richard Marshall testifies to what South Dakota perceives as "the truth"; for violating Richard Marshall’s constitutional right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness after he was found not guilty in a fed court; for violating the South Dakota state bar as it pertains to information about Richard Marshall before his parole hearing as it will indeed rule against Richard Marshall.

LSA also accuses Colorado, Wyoming and SD circuit courts, as well as the SD parole board with aiding and abetting the SD attorney general with the premeditated act of revoking Marshall’s parole because of the fact that SD has no plea agreement with Richard Marshall and therefore, Marshall beat the United States with an acquittal. SD now wants to punish him for a crime that happened prior to his parole date and therefore had not physically violated any Colorado, Wyoming or SD law to revoke his parole.

Further, the Lakota Student Alliance calls on Indian Tribal governments to examine their roles in the South Dakota justice system and question why they are not encouraging tribal members to be literate or educated in law as it pertains to our rights in a foreign justice system. We are nations of people, not citizens of any state. This is what our traditional leaders have taught our parents, grandparents and relatives. This is what we intend to maintain.

Further still, we ask Indian Country to determine the probability that South Dakota may be engaging in Prosecutorial and Judicial Misconduct and that Indian country should take action to show the meaning of true Indigenous justice toward American Indians.

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For More Information:

Coordinator, Lakota Student Alliance,

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